Amazon Exclusive: David Baldacci Reviews You're Next
David Baldacci is a worldwide bestselling novelist. His books have been published in over 45 languages and in more than 80 countries; more than 110 million copies are in print. His most recent book is The Sixth Man.
I'm no stranger to Gregg Hurwitz's work. I tore through Trust No One like a meth addict on a binge. The guy does his best work, I think, when he takes a murky past and slams it in the face of his protagonist decades later. You're Next is right in this wheelhouse. The Prologue is pure adrenaline, heart-wrenching and starts the novel off on a terrific trajectory. A little boy wakes up and over the course of a few pages he is abandoned by his father. The reader takes an emotional arrow right in the heart. Right away we want to know more about the kid and what became of him. Lots of questions unanswered. But you know with Hurwitz that while the questions eventually will be answered, they won't be in ways the reader can easily predict.
The boy has grown into a man, but he can't escape his past. Mike is a good guy trying to make a living for his family. An environmentally conscious builder, he works hard and tries to stand by his word. Before he can draw a breath he's hit by a tsunami. Events tumble out, each one more inexplicable and seemingly disconnected than its predecessor. What Hurwitz also does extremely well is put one in the moment. Big scenes are tough to write, but the smaller ones are tougher still. It's like the tendons and ligaments connecting the large muscle masses together. You mess those up, nothing else works right. He's also a fine wordsmith. "A gloved fist the size of a dumbbell flew at her, shattering her eye socket and knocking her back into the front door, rocketing it inward so hard the handle stuck in the drywall. A moment of tranquility. Even the crickets were awed into silence...His plain, handsome face was oddly smooth, almost generic, as if his features were pressed through latex." Good, good stuff.
What Mike now faces are demons from his past. Desperate, organized, efficiently ruthless men are coming for him. But now it's not just Mike. He has a family, wife Annabel and their daughter Kat, a precocious eight-year-old. He has an ally from old days, before he was Mike, husband, businessman, father. The survival instinct takes over and the battle is engaged. I read lots of thrillers and mysteries, and have gotten pretty good at separating the wheat from the chaff, figuring out the foreshadowing, what seemingly insignificant clues, what seemingly throw-off lines and what nuggets of seemingly useless information are actually critical to understanding the plot. But Hurwitz is a skilled hand and at the end of the day I say just let this baby ride till the last page. Then you can close the book, stammer something about that SOB getting you again, and you can wait with breathless anticipation for the man to reload his Glock and fire away on his next thriller.
"You're Next is an emotionally evocative, page-turning exploration of human corruption at its worst. Chilling and riveting!” --Jonathan Kellerman on You're Next
“Excellent…keeps Mike (and the reader) on edge, wondering what is happening to him and how far it will escalate. Highly recommended to Hurwitz’s many faithful readers and to fans of Linwood Barclay, Harlen Coben, and Lisa Gardner.” -- Booklist on You're Next
“You’re Next is a deft, expertly plotted thriller driven by the kind of realistic suspense that will make any reader’s heartbeat race.” Thomas Perry on You're Next
“The bad guys are suitably evil and the mystery satisfying, but Hurwitz’s real success is depicting Mike’s hard-won life as a husband, father, and successful businessman. A first-rate thriller!” -- Library Journal (starred review)
“Hurwitz masterfully provokes feelings of extreme dread…Shep and Mike fight and sleuth their way through intensifying mayhem until they find the unexpected answer..” -- Publishers Weekly